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Golomski enjoying retirement with Green Knights

By Greg Bates

DE PERE – Retirement has been anything but slow for Ken Golomski.

After spending 25 years as the head coach of the Ashwaubenon football program and earning state and national hall of fame honors, Golomski was quick to accept a coaching gig with the St. Norbert College football team.

Now, 13 years later, Golomski is still going strong with his 72nd birthday looming on Halloween.

Former Ashwaubenon High School football coach Ken Golomski is an assistant coach with St. Norbert College. St. Norbert Athletics Photo

“It’s still a thrill, fun, an exuberant experience and it gets you fired up,” said Golomski, who is the St. Norbert running backs coach. “As long as I have something positive to contribute and I feel I’m helping out, I’ll stay with it.”

Golomski goes golfing once in a while but admits he’s not very good.

His wife, Monica, is always trying to get him involved with different activities, but Golomski is fine dedicating most of his time to the game he loves.

During the football season, his mind is always on the sport.

On a typical gameday week, Golomski has morning meetings and sits down with his athletes to go over class schedules and tests as well as having film session.

After a break in the afternoon, Golomski is at the team’s three-hour practice.

He puts in seven to eight hours per day on football alone.

“It’s one of those full-time, part-time jobs,” Golomski said.

Golomski has never lost the passion for football, which started at a young age.

A three-sport athlete in high school, he graduated from Wausau Newman in 1965.

He played wide receiver and defensive back at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point before getting into coaching.

St. Norbert football coach Dan McCarty said he loves having Golomski on his staff.

The veteran coach is a great resource for the younger guys on the staff.

“In my first year, he came into the office and had a lot of advice and shared his opinion on things, which I certainly appreciate,” McCarty said. “Now that we’re in year five, his suggestions are more selective. Our staff has things rolling here and everyone knows how everyone operates.”

McCarty knows he has a reliable assistant on the sideline with him who has a vast amount of knowledge after coaching football for 46 years.

“It’s something I don’t take for granted because he’s always there, has a voice and the experiences to go off,” McCarty said. “He doesn’t say a lot during games, but when he does make those suggestions, they’re pretty spot on.”

Golomski, who coached Ashwaubenon to WIAA Division 2 state titles in 1996, 2000, ’01 and ’05, isn’t afraid to offer advice.

However, he makes sure not to overstep his bounds.

“There’s a difference between making decisions as a head guy and making suggestions as an assistant,” Golomski said. “I’ll make a comment here and there – sometimes it’s taken, sometimes it’s dismissed and sometimes it goes on the backburner.”

Golomski knows how to relate to college athletes and is aware earning their respect goes a long way in building trust.

With his track record of being a National High School Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame inductee in 2017 and a Wisconsin Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame recipient in 2005, his players always pay close attention to what he preaches.

“Our guys certainly know his background, his experience and buy into everything,” McCarty said. “The guy’s a legend. You’re talking about a national high school hall of fame coach. Everyone knows and loves G. He’s a great recruiter, but again, he’s got so much knowledge of the game of football.”

Along with his responsibilities as the running backs coach, Golomski has been one of the main recruiters for the St. Norbert football team for the last 13 years.

He has an easy time saying good things about the college to prospective student-athletes.

“We’ve got a nice product we sell at our place: a great education, a four-year graduation, excellent facilities, beautiful campus and Packers training camp,” Golomski said. “We’ve got a lot to sell, and it’s a great place to be – we treat our kids right. There’s no grabbing facemasks and no yelling and screaming at them – it’s a teaching experience. We’ve got a good product and a great place to recruit at.”

At 71, Golomski said as long as his health is good, he’ll stay on the sideline.

Working with college-aged kids rejuvenates him and keeps him feeling young, as does being involved with football.

“It keeps you fresh and keeps you involved,” Golomski said. “The excitement, humor and the teaching – I’ve been a teacher all my life, so I enjoy that aspect of it. I enjoy working with young people, and I try to be a positive influence in their life. I try to point them in the right direction and help them along their journey. I still enjoy myself and the game of football.”

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